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Today's Stichomancy for Jon Stewart

The first excerpt represents the element of Air. It speaks of mental influences and the process of thought, and is drawn from Ursula by Honore de Balzac:

"Well, what do you want to say?" demanded Minoret.

"You are threatened with the loss of your son. If the dead man told things that you alone know, one must needs tremble when he tells things that no one can know till they happen. Make restitution, I say, make restitution. Don't damn your soul for a little money."

"Restitution of what?"

"The fortune the doctor intended for Ursula. You took those three certificates--I know it now. You began by persecuting that poor girl, and you end by offering her a fortune; you have stumbled into lies, you have tangled yourself up in this net, and you are taking false steps every day. You are very clumsy and unskilful; your accomplice

The second excerpt represents the element of Fire. It speaks of emotional influences and base passions, and is drawn from Under the Andes by Rex Stout:

Desiree shout something at me, but didn't catch the words.

My first stone found its goal. The two rafts, side by side not forty feet away, were a fair mark. The stone was nearly the size of a man's head and very heavy; I had all I could do to get the distance.

It struck the raft on the right fairly; the thing turned turtle in a flash, precipitating its occupants onto the other raft. The added weight carried that, too, under the surface, and the six Incas were floundering about in the water.

I expected to see them turn and swim for the landing opposite; but, instead, they headed directly toward me!

The third excerpt represents the element of Water. It speaks of pure spiritual influences and feelings of love, and is drawn from Massimilla Doni by Honore de Balzac:

being alone with her, had accompanied Massimilla to her retreat. And now this pretty pair had been there for six months.

Massimilla, now twenty, had not sacrificed her religious principles to her passion without a struggle. Still they had yielded, though tardily; and at this moment she would have been ready to consummate the love union for which her mother had prepared her, as Emilio sat there holding her beautiful, aristocratic hand,--long, white, and sheeny, ending in fine, rosy nails, as if she had procured from Asia some of the henna with which the Sultan's wives dye their fingertips.

A misfortune, of which she was unconscious, but which was torture to Emilio, kept up a singular barrier between them. Massimilla, young as

The fourth excerpt represents the element of Earth. It speaks of physical influences and the impact of the unseen on the visible world, and is drawn from The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Bronte Sisters:

from the attendance. I mean, however, to make the experiment next Sunday, and oblige myself to leave him in charge of Rachel for a few hours. It will be a hard task, but surely no imprudence; and the vicar has been to scold me for my neglect of the ordinances of religion. I had no sufficient excuse to offer, and I promised, if all were well, he should see me in my pew next Sunday; for I do not wish to be set down as an infidel; and, besides, I know I should derive great comfort and benefit from an occasional attendance at public worship, if I could only have faith and fortitude to compose my thoughts in conformity with the solemn occasion, and forbid them to be for ever dwelling on my absent child, and on the dreadful


The Tenant of Wildfell Hall